The Prince of Rock, Sheldon Tarsha, has undergone superhuman metamorphosis with his new album, Prophecies. He is now simply TARSHA, and at the risk of stroking his humble ego way out of proportion, I'd like to now refer to him as the Apocalyptic Messiah of Rock. I just bought and heard the new CD, Prophecies, through and through, and I have to say, I'm amazed Album Art isn't dead but actually back--it's not only a funky good rock album worthy of praise for its primary function to rock hard and well, but I think it's Album Art at its finest--an album, like in the days of LP, that's more than surface deep but one with conceptual unity and still plenty of room for interpretation. Prophecies is rapturous, virtuous, completely original and sounds like Tarsha, the artist.
The album is cathartic, going from "Dirty" to "Generation-H", from original sin to exodus to a place of unity and harmony. This is what 's been missing all year--something epic, something about the human race from birth to death and all that's in-between, a story of biblical proportion from a unique and sincere perspective, speaking to individual hearts as well as addressing humanity at large. This album is so huge, so cult, it's classic. I already had total respect for Tarsha as a top notch songwriter and musician who's written truly captivating melodies and hooks with his demo debut, but he's grown to be so much more; he has a real vision and things to say with his first complete CD. I can't even begin to rave about him as a singer! He's got it all--pitch, control, power, tone, phrasing. The guitar playing (in fact all instruments) on the album's all his work, too, and he's a precise and lyrical player! I can say that his metamorphosis is complete and he's well on his way with a killer package to tour with next year.
I was particularly blown away with "My First Hit" and "Buried On the Inside" (his voice sounds great! Interesting chord changes in this song, too), though I also love "Ten Stars Away", "Skeletons", "Cynical Christ", "Let You Go" and I'm quite moved by "Generation-H" with that sweet guitar opening through which unfolds a third eye-opening, trancendental coming home anthem. "Why Fight" and "Modern Day Exodus" are important pieces on the CD and give greater meaning to the whole. I think the album has some interesting facets: overall, it's back-to-basics, patchouli-laden rock n' roll driven by contradicting desires for sex and purity, fantasy and truth, and a courageous call for peace, all delivered with a modern edge and unparalleled command by the most outstanding male rock voice of our time! Job well done! If you want something refreshing, skip the superficial, carbon copy, pseudo-Queenified, glam rock-vapidified, thoroughly uninspired and played out scene and buy Tarsha's new CD, Prophecies, and count your lucky stars this holiday season for the long-awaited Second Coming. Visit www.tarsharock.com
Reviewed by Sali Oguri, Singer and Creator of Sensorium of Song and Scent, December 2, 2006
Images: Sheldon Tarsha, Prophecies CD cover, courtesy of Sheldon Tarsha